Conquering Gum Disease
Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is an infection of the gums surrounding your teeth.
Gum disease is one of the top reasons for tooth loss in adults. Since it is virtually pain-free, many patients do not know they have the disease.
During each regular checkup, your dentist will check for signs of periodontal disease by measuring the space between your teeth and gums.
What causes gum disease?
Gum disease is caused by a buildup of plaque (a sticky form of bacteria that forms on the teeth). If the plaque is not removed (by flossing, brushing, and regular dental checkups), it will continue to build up and create toxins that can damage the gums. Periodontal disease forms just below the gum line and creates small pockets that separate the gums from the teeth. Periodontal disease has two stages: gingivitis and periodontitis.
- Gingivitis — This is the early stage of gum disease, when the gums become red and swollen, and bleed easily. At this stage, the disease is treatable and can usually be eliminated by daily brushing and flossing.
- Periodontitis — If left untreated, gingivitis will advance into periodontitis, and the gums and bone that support the teeth will become seriously and irreversibly damaged. Gums infected with periodontitis can cause teeth to become loose, fall out, or be removed by a dentist.
Certain factors can increase a patient’s risk of developing periodontal disease, including:
- Smoking or using chewing tobacco
- Certain types of medication such as steroids, anti-epilepsy drugs, cancer therapy drugs, calcium channel blockers, and oral contraceptives
- Bridges that no longer fit properly
- Crooked teeth
- Old fillings
While it is possible to have periodontal disease and not know it, some symptoms can include:
- Gums that bleed easily
- Red, swollen, tender gums
- Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
- Persistent bad breath or bad taste
- Pus between your teeth and gums
- Permanent teeth that are loose or separating
- Any change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
- Any change in the fit of partial dentures
Treating Gum Disease
Treatments for gum disease can vary depending on the severity of each individual case. Typical treatments include:
- Non-surgical treatments such as at-home periodontal trays, and scaling and root planing (deep cleaning)
- Periodontal surgery and laser gum surgery
- Dental implants
Preventing Gum Disease
Regular dental checkups and periodontal examinations are important for maintaining your health and the health of your smile. You don’t have to lose teeth to periodontal disease, and by practicing good oral hygiene at home, you can significantly reduce your chances of ever getting gum disease. Remember to brush regularly, clean between your teeth, eat a balanced diet, and schedule regular dental visits to help keep your smile healthy.
Dutch Hill Family Dental
95 DUTCH HILL ROAD ORANGEBURG, NY 10962 (845) 359-8424
Dutch Hill Family Dental
MONDAY 11:00 am – 7:00 pm
TUESDAY 8:30 am – 6:00 pm
WEDNESDAY 7:00 am – 2:30 pm
THURSDAY 8:30 am – 6:00 pm
FRIDAY 8:30 AM – 3:00 PM
Open select Saturday's
8:00 AM - 1 :00 PM
KIND WORDS FROM OUR PATIENTS
Dr. Tom and his fabulous hygienist, Cathy, provide wonderful care for my family! I have referred many friends and colleagues who have been quite pleased with the services at this practice. The music is great too!Donna
Very professional, great environment , recommend highly.Brian
Dr. Thomas Pizzolo and his hygienist Cathy are knowledgeable professionals. What I liked- answered all my questions, clean office, good attitude, put me at ease. Additionally, I liked the fact that Dr. Pizzolo called me about my concerns regarding orthodontic treatment that I'm about to get from my orthodontist.
It takes that extra step of personal approach to each patient to be different from the corporate world.
I'm not really good at going to the doctors or especially dentists. This time I'm actually planning on going back for my next appointment in May and I'm looking forward to it.
I have been a patient for roughly 25 years, since I was a small child, and have always had pleasant and positive experiences during my many visits to Dr. Pizzolo's office. The entire staff is friendly, professional and extremely skilled at what they do.
I have never dreaded going to the dentist and I contribute that to the people here and knowing that I have always been in good, capable hands. I have recommended this family practice to many, and will continue to do so!Chris
Outstanding Customer Service! My dentist is out of town and I had a dental emergency. She called me and told me to come and see Dr. Pizzolo. Both Dr. Pizzolo and his office staff were friendly, kind and patient. What a lovely reminder that customer service and compassion are still a core value for people. Thank you for treating me like part of the family.Suzanne
I have visited Dr. Pizzolo and Dr. Elashmawy on several occasions and have found them to be very professional, understanding and knowledgeable. They listened to my questions and concerns. Appointments are easily made and they are "on time" with my appointments. Their staff is very friendly and helpful. I would highly recommend them.Janet